Eastbourne Borough Council’s debt is £112,557,000, as reported by the BBC.

That figure for 2023-24 equates to £1,108 per person. It shows Eastbourne’s population as 101,593.

BBC analysis shows UK councils owe a combined £97.8bn to lenders, equivalent to around £1,400 per person.

Eastbourne Borough Council is one of many authorities that has seen costs soar and hosted an emergency summit on homelessness in October (2023) attended by 158 councils.  A cross-party group of 119 council leaders subsequently signed a letter to the Chancellor asking for help. 

Temporary accommodation costs in Eastbourne have increased from £1.4m in 2018/19 to £4.9million in 2023/24 – 30% of the council’s total (£15m) spending power.  The situation is even more severe in many other local authorities, making more s114 notices inevitable in the coming weeks.

Councillor Stephen Holt, Leader of Eastbourne Borough Council, will attend the meeting on January 23 at One Great George Street.  He said:

“I’ve said all along that we need to work with the government, not against it.  

“Our first summit was attended by council leaders of all political parties, all with the same problem that we can’t continue to provide vital frontline services and achieve a balanced budget unless we get immediate financial support. 

“I have personally invited the Minister for Local Government to attend the meeting next week and extended that invitation to other MPs, Ministers and Members of the House of Lords to hear the scale of the problem we are facing.

“I hope they recognise the gravity of this situation and find time to seriously discuss how we can resolve it before it is too late.”